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Understanding the Heroin Withdrawal Timeline

Woman curls up into a ball as she wonders how long the heroin withdrawal timeline lasts

Heroin is a highly addictive opioid drug. It is inexpensive and easily accessible, making it a commonly abused opioid. In recent years, heroin use has increased across all demographics, likely because individuals with prescription opioid addiction turn to heroin when unable to access their drug of choice. When a person wants to quit, what is the heroin withdrawal timeline?

Because of its rapid, intense effects, heroin use can quickly lead to dependence and addiction. Heroin use poses significant health risks, including overdose and death. Heroin addiction is challenging to overcome, but it is treatable. At Vertava Health, treatment begins in our heroin detox center, where patients have access to medical and clinical care to safely and effectively detox in a comfortable and supportive environment. Call 844.451.0263 to learn how we can help you or your loved one.

Heroin Withdrawal Timeline

Most people with heroin addiction have tried to quit on their own without success. The physical and psychological symptoms of heroin withdrawal can be intense, painful, and distressing. The fear of withdrawal is a common barrier to treatment. While it is impossible to avoid withdrawal symptoms, a medically supervised heroin detox center can help make the process as safe and comfortable as possible.

How long does heroin withdrawal last? Understanding what to expect from heroin detox can help individuals better prepare for it. Heroin withdrawal can vary in intensity and duration depending on several factors, including the level of dependence, the amount and frequency of use, and overall health. A general outline of the heroin withdrawal timeline follows:

  • 6 to 12 hours after the last dose – initial symptoms include anxiety, restlessness, muscle aches, and intense cravings.
  • 1 to 3 days – Symptoms peak in intensity and include sweating, abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, insomnia, increased heart rate, and high blood pressure. Psychological symptoms, including depression, irritability, and intense cravings, are also prevalent.
  • 4 to 7 days – Physical withdrawal symptoms may linger but are greatly diminished. Psychological symptoms persist, including mood swings, anxiety, depression, and cravings.
  • 1 to 2 weeks – Physical symptoms have subsided, but psychological ones persist and can be triggered by situations or stimuli associated with heroin use.
  • Beyond two weeks – Acute withdrawal is over, but individuals may experience post-acute withdrawal syndrome (PAWS), characterized by anxiety, mood swings, low energy, sleep disturbances, and difficulty experiencing pleasure.

The heroin withdrawal timeline highlights the importance of a medically supervised detox followed by a heroin addiction treatment program to help prevent relapse and uncover the roots of addiction for long-term recovery.

The Benefits of a Heroin Addiction Treatment Program

Detoxing from heroin without receiving follow-up treatment rarely leads to lasting recovery. With the physical symptoms of addiction out of the way, you will be ready to address the mental health issues that contributed to your addiction. Without addressing these underlying issues, the potential for relapse is significant.

Through individualized treatment at Vertava Health, patients learn about heroin addiction in a safe environment that allows them to focus on recovery. Following are some of the critical benefits of a heroin addiction treatment program:

  • Breaking the cycle of addiction
  • Developing new habits and coping strategies
  • Having the opportunity to repair damaged relationships
  • Receiving therapy for past trauma
  • Learning how to establish healthy boundaries
  • Developing life skills
  • Building a healthy support network
  • Learning relapse prevention strategies

Heroin addiction impacts all areas of life, and heroin addiction treatment provides comprehensive care to heal the mind, body, and spirit. Patients can access nutritional counseling, wellness programs, family therapy, medication-assisted treatment (MAT), and more.

Find Treatment for Heroin Addiction at Vertava Health

If you or a loved one is struggling with heroin addiction, seeking treatment can be life-saving. At Vertava Health, you or your loved one will receive the best professional care and find support from a strong community of peers who can relate to the challenges of heroin addiction.

Our addiction and mental health specialists work with patients to develop individualized treatment plans utilizing evidence-based and holistic therapies to provide integrated, comprehensive care. Contact Vertava Health at 844.451.0263 to begin your recovery journey today.